Verstappen’s last grid penalty came in Qatar last season after he was penalised for failing to slow down for double-waved yellow flags in qualifying. But despite starting seventh on the grid, the Dutchman recovered to finish second — suggesting Red Bull may not be hindered too badly with the fastest car on the grid at Monza or Spa.
However, Red Bull will be wary of the threat posed by Leclerc and Carlos Sainz after Ferrari showed great race pace at the French Grand Prix last weekend, before Leclerc’s error sent him into the barrier. Mercedes are also making small improvements, with Lewis Hamilton finishing second in that race — his best performance of the season.
And it is no surprise that Marko also confirmed Red Bull will be introducing another upgrade after the summer break as they aim to lock down both drivers’ and constructors’ championships as early as possible.
“We are constantly developing,” Marko added. “That’s the DNA of Red Bull Racing. It won’t be as serious anymore, but there will be updates well into the second half of the season. We’ll have to wait and see the details.”